All against Radamel Falcao: the hot River-San Lorenzo and a flying kick with the flavor of revenge

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The Colombian striker was sought by rivals because he had injured Sebastián Méndez in May 2008. Three and a half months later, El Gallego took revenge.

On the one hand, a protagonist: Radamel Falcao García. On the other, several: German Voboril, Agustín Orion, Jonathan Bottinelli, Adrian Gonzalez and Sebastián Méndez. Although the Galician It would also have a leading role in the duels that will be discussed in these lines. Those who between May 2007 and January 2009 played River and San Lorenzo. Whether they were official or friendly matches, sparks were raised in all of them. There were fights, threats and a kick flying flavored revenge.

The elbow of the Colombian Falcao that on May 13, 2017 took Voboril off the field 35 minutes into the first half did not generate a subsequent scandal. It was taken as one more play of a boring 0-0. However, someone did not forget that play. Nor were there any strong clashes in the Apertura classic (1-1), on August 19 of that year, when Falcao entered the second half.

In the summer of 2008, in Mar del Plata, the hostile climate warmed up. After a crash in the San Lorenzo area, Orion rebuked the forward: “Next time I’ll ruin you, break your knee, send you to the hospital “. Earlier, Falcao had hit his head against Bottinelli, which generated the goalkeeper’s reaction.

That day, the Colombian defended himself: “We are all colleagues and I would never think with bad intention. I don’t know why he bothered like that; maybe because of the fever of losing. These situations are experienced a lot during games and atrocities are said on the pitch that are not fulfilled later on outside ”. A speech that would keep in time.

That year, in addition to the local championship games, River (Diego Simeone was the coach) and San Lorenzo (Ramón Díaz) played for the last 16 of the Copa Libertadores. In the first leg, on April 30, San Lorenzo won 2-1 at the Nuevo Gasómetro. The rematch was played on May 8 at the Monumental and was unforgettable: the local won 2-0, the Cyclone suffered two expulsions, tied it with goals from Gonzalo Bergessio and went to the quarterfinals.

In that electrifying climate, on the closing of the first half, Falcao was strong against Méndez, who could not go out to play the second half. It was later confirmed that he suffered a microfracture in the right knee and that he would miss the rest of the Cup (he needed more than a month to recover). “It crossed my mind to go find Falcao, but then I reconsidered”Confessed the Galician a few months later.

The Orion archer was on fire. “I am very hot. This is already repetitive. He not only had problems with the campus. The other day he also had problems with those of Boca. Falcao speaks slowly or better than me and it seems that he is good, but inside the court is not good“, he sentenced.

The next day, the forward defended himself: “We are colleagues and I don’t like that happening to him. I will speak with him and I find his injury regrettable. There are codes in football and what happens on the court I will never tell, like others. Sometimes some do not like that one also makes oneself feel or is firm or that one is not intimidated. “Once again, the Colombian spoke of codes.

The history of disagreements continued on August 31, for the Apertura tournament. Recovered from the injury, Méndez started. Falcao was still in front. At 15 minutes the defender’s first strong tackle was given and referee Diego Abal showed him the yellow card. He finished a boring 0-0 and in the last play, in the field of Cyclone, Méndez gave the Colombian a flying kick in his left costal area. Red card.

“If it was a kick, it was a scratch. It will have been the softest kick of my life. They tell me that the kick was treacherous. However, I thought he had pushed me ”, declared Falcao wryly after the match. And he added about Méndez: “He never said anything to me on the field of play. He is a strong player who does not give anything away and is not one of those who talk and talk inside and then complain at the slightest touch ”.

Mendez, calmer, apologized to his teammates for the untimely reaction. And then he explained: “If my intention was to break it, as he did with me, without a doubt I could have done it. The iron that I put on his back ended up being nothing, but because I didn’t want to do anything worse to him. “And he also emphasized:” I didn’t have a timer on top to know exactly how much time was missing and hit the kick right at that moment. point”.

But that revenge kick It was not the end of the duel between Falcao and several San Lorenzo players. On January 28, 2009, at the closing of the Pentagonal in Salta, the Colombian, who was the figure of the match, was the main objective of several players santos. “That is what happened previously weighs, because the truth is that they hit Falcao too many kicks,” said Nestor Gorosito, coach millionaire.

“The truth is that I do not understand some San Lorenzo players. It must be that there is something personal with me. I try to avoid conflicts, but sometimes you can’t, ”Falcao confessed. And I add: “Mendez is a gentleman. Goes strong and ready. Everything is alright. Those who always have problems are Orion, Bottinelli and Adrián González, who entered the second half to say things. They wanted to warm the party, I don’t know why ”.

Time passed, Falcao went to play for Porto de Portugal and did not return to Argentine football. He Galician Méndez retired and began his career as a coach. And in 2017, already calmer, more mature, in his role as coach, Méndez explained: “It was a little girl. If he wanted to, it really hurt him. It didn’t work out for me ”.

In July this year, in an interview on Fox Sports in full quarantine due to the Covid-19 pandemic, they reminded him of that crossing. He acknowledged that the Colombian left him two messages and closed the old duel: “I wanted to control my anger the whole game but I couldn’t. I had been left out of the last Libertadores who could play well. It gave me a rage, but it was stupid. Now it is anecdotal and of course I would sit down for coffee with him. At this age I say it, but 10 years ago I still wanted to fight him ”.

HS

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